Texas Senators Want Hurricane Harvey Disaster Declaration
Above Photo: Texas Sens. Ted Cruz and John Cornyn want relief funding for Hurricane Harvey expedited, despite voting down Hurricane Sandy assistance in 2012. (PABLO MARTINEZ MONSIVAIS/AP)
Despite Opposing Superstorm Sandy Relief Funding
What blows around, comes around.
The devastation of Hurricane Harvey has two-faced Texas politicians looking for the same sort of relief funding they flatly opposed five years ago when Sandy pounded New York and New Jersey.
Texas Sens. Ted Cruz and John Cornyn were among the most adamant opponents to the bi-state aid in 2012 — and both already reached out this weekend seeking funds.
Both voted against a $50.4 billion Sandy assistance package after the storm, which caused more than 100 Northeast deaths and tens of billions of dollars in damage.
Despite the obvious need, it took 91 days for Congress to approve the desperately needed cash.
Yet Cruz and Cornyn sent a Friday letter to Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, asking him to expedite emergency funding to deal with the damage inflicted by the worst hurricane in the state since 1961.
Estimates of the Harvey storm damage in Texas run as high as $40 billion.
Cruz — who previously came to Washington with his hand out after Texas flooding in 2015 — said the Sandy bill was filled with political pork instead of disaster relief.
Hurricane Harvey lashes Texas as it makes landfall
In the House, all but one Republican representative from the Lone Star State opposed the aid bills for Sandy.
Republican leaders in the House actually delayed a vote on the multi-billion dollar aid program in early 2013, adjourning a January session for weeks as storm victims twisted in the wind.
Rep. Peter King (R-L.I.) at the time described the behavior of his GOP colleagues as “disgraceful,” noting most of the opponents came from states that had previously received disaster aid.
Cornyn and Cruz were among the 39 Republican senators to oppose the package, along with 179 GOP members of the house. Republican senators further delayed the vote by trying to offset the aid with budget cuts.